Gishan Abeyratne
Gishan Abeyratne
Associate Director

Articles From the Team

London private practice legal salary review - 2022

The nature and sheer scale of the London market means that the breadth of salaries is necessarily wide, depending on the type of firm.

In the City you have a wide mix of firms ranging from smaller national firms all the way up to leading US firms. This leads to major differences in salary depending on the type of firm you are considering.

Steady growth

While 2021 saw some huge increases in salaries across the London market, in 2022 there were generally smaller incremental rises.

Salaries have still increased following firm-wide salary reviews, but the percentage increase appears smaller in 2022 than it was in 2021. We expected this to happen because it simply wouldn’t have been sustainable for firms to continue to increase salaries at the same rate they did in 2021.

As it stands, at the top end of the market – leading US and international firms – we’re seeing NQ salaries in the region of £150k, with the bottom end of the market seeing national firms offering NQ salaries as low as £50k in the City, but with an average more in the region of £65-70k.

Sign-on bonuses

That being said, firms across the market are still prepared to do everything they can to secure the best talent.

In London in the past year we have seen a lot more sign on bonuses being agreed, where previously this may not have been the case, as well as firms pushing to the top end of their bandings to secure the right candidates. 

Remote and hybrid working is here to stay, it seems, although many firms are now encouraging a return to the office two-to-three days per week, and for some firms this is now pretty much mandated.

On the interim front there were a quiet couple of months over the summer break but we’re now seeing an increase in available candidates and client hiring. With the recent news on the IR35 changes (again!) we are hopeful we will see this side of the market continue to grow.

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